Police in Montgomery County on Friday identified the 30-year-old fatally shot by an officer as Finan H. Berhe of the 1500 block of Hadden Manor Court in White Oak. Officials also released a photograph of a kitchen knife they say Berhe was holding when he charged the officer.
At about 2:15 p.m. Thursday, police received a 911 call from a neighbor of Berhe’s. The caller said Berhe had thrown a rock at his window and had told him “to call the police,” Montgomery County Police Chief Marcus Jones said.
The caller also said Berhe was standing outside near a sidewalk, holding a large butcher knife, according to Jones.
As the first officer arrived, he saw a man with the knife, Jones said. While getting out of his police car, the officer ordered the man to the ground several times — commands that were recorded by a body-worn camera, Jones said.
“The subject rushed at the officer. The officer retreated a little bit. The subject then began to walk backwards,” Jones said. “The officer again repeated to the individual several times to get on the ground and to drop the knife.”
Moments later, Berhe “ran aggressively while holding the knife straight to the officer,” who fired his service weapon, Jones said.
“The subject went down, shot, at that particular time,” Jones said.
The officer immediately rendered first aid to Berhe, police said. He was taken to a hospital and died of his injuries, Jones said.
Montgomery County detectives are investigating the shooting. Their probe will be examined by prosecutors from neighboring Howard County under a standing agreement to review each other’s police shootings.
The officer who fired his weapon has been placed on administrative leave, in accordance with department policy for police shootings.